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College Planning

3 free and easy budget worksheets for students

Freshman year of college may be some students' first experience with budgeting. This article lists three different resources for preparing a budget worksheet.
Your freshman year of college can be a baptism by fire when it comes to finances. As a dependent student, you’ve probably never had to juggle so many different expenses on your own before. The learning curve for managing your student finances can be quite steep, at times. If you’ve already made a few missteps, or you’re just worried about blowing through your savings before you finish your first semester, try to organize and prioritize your spending with these helpful budgeting worksheets for students. (Bonus: You don’t even need Microsoft Excel to access any of them!)


The private student loan provider Sallie Mae may already have a vested interest in your college career, so it makes sense that they’d also provide an extremely comprehensive “Monthly Budget Worksheet” for students. This worksheet aims to help you understand how much discretionary income you actually have by weighing your monthly income against your monthly expenses. It helps you with accounting for every detail of your budget: housing and utilities, savings and debts, etc. It also makes allowances for tons of extras, including everything from concert costs to pet supplies and daycare.

American Student Assistance

If you’d prefer something a little simpler, the American Student Assistance budgeting spreadsheet breaks everything down for you in one handy column. American Student Assistance is a private non-profit organization dedicated to helping students achieve a more thorough understanding of both finance and financial aid in a “socially responsible” manner. Their “Budget Worksheet” allows you to tally up your expenses and see how much you’re saving (or losing) at the end of the month.

University of California, Riverside

This helpful budget spreadsheet furnished by the Financial Aid department of the University of California, Riverside is especially impressive. Not all of your expenses are monthly, and this UCR worksheet accounts for that by allowing you to calculate your budget and insert all manner of expenses that are relevant to your situation on a monthly, quarterly, or annual basis. This extensive worksheet really allows you to obtain a full 180 degree view of your financial health.
Need more student-friendly budgeting tips? Consult our Protective Learning Center and read up on the best ways to save money during college, the best ways to save on college textbooks, and more.



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